Fernando Alonso reckons he can approach the title deciding Brazilian Grand Prix this weekend in a more relaxed frame of mind than arch rival Sebastian Vettel, as he has more to gain and little to lose given he is the underdog and 13 points adrift.
Alonso managed to keep himself in contention in the USA on Sunday when he claimed third in his Ferrari F2012 in the inaugural race at Texas' Circuit of the Americas, and now he is calling on his team to strive for perfection at Interlagos and to make sure they are as prepared as possible for the F1 2012 season finale.
“We know it will be difficult for us, but we are confident,” Alonso told Ferrari's official website on a brief visit to the New York Stock Exchange. “We must do our utmost, concentrating on ourselves and making no mistakes and then we can see what Vettel has done. It's been a championship of highs and lows for everyone, but now we can only be perfect.
“However, I think we can sleep more easily than our rivals: we have a lot to gain and little to lose and for them it's the opposite.
“In 2010 the situation was reversed so I hope that once again the outcome goes in favour of the one who is behind at the moment.”
“I don't think the track will condition the result: we have seen that Red Bull is strong on all types of track so that should also be the case in Interlagos. But F1 is strange and anything can happen: the important thing is not to be caught out unprepared,” he added.
Meanwhile, speaking earlier in the day, the Spaniard rejected talk that he will be out for 'revenge' after losing out to Vettel in Abu Dhabi in 2010, when a strategic blunder cost him and the Scuderia dear.
“Would a win be revenge for 2010 in Abu Dhabi?” Alonso pondered, “No, I think it would just be happiness for us, as for 99% of the people, although maybe not for those at Red Bull... Ferrari is something special, with everyone giving 100% and even more, because they feel part of this family.
“We are honest with ourselves and our fans though: we know we are not super competitive, but if we are still in the running, it's down to the team which is the best of the lot. We will have a few small updates, but the others will have done the same, so the situation won't change much. Maybe finding a good set-up can make the difference or the way the car suits the circuit.
“There are 71 laps to go now that will decide the final outcome: the efforts of several months will all come down to a very short space of time.
“Then what will happen, will happen. We know that a place on the podium alone could be enough. I have confidence in myself and in the team and we will fight right to the end,” he vowed.